Van Oord applies Atlantis tubes to create dam in IJsselmeer

Contracted by the Dutch Province of Friesland, Van Oord has now installed five Atlantis tubes in the IJsselmeer near Kornwerderzand to create a dam. Atlantis tubes are elongated bags made of specially developed geotextile fabric that are filled with sand by dredging equipment.

This is the first time Atlantis tubes have been used to create a dam. The 340-metre long dam is part of the construction work for the Fish Migration River project.

Atlantis tubes offer the possibility to construct both temporary and permanent dams in a sustainable manner. This method reduces the use of primary building materials such as stones and sand and therefore also reduces the emission of fossil fuels by transport. Finally, there is a significant cost reduction due to the absence of purchasing, transport and application of stone materials.

Geotube technology

The Atlantis Tubes are derived from Geotube technology and are made of extra strong plastic fabric that combines a high sand density with a high water permeability. The storage capacity is up to 2000 cubic metres of dredged material. Thanks to this combination, it is now possible to use dredging equipment such as trailing suction hopper dredgers and cutter suction dredgers for the filling process.

During this process, the water flows through the textile and specially designed overflow valves to the exterior and as a result the sand and sludge are compacted into a solid sand body. The Atlantis tubes have a maximum length of 150 metres and a diameter of almost 5 metres.

Van Oord and Ten Cate Geosynthetics have jointly developed the Atlantis tubes for use in hydraulic engineering projects worldwide. Atlantis tubes are produced by Ten Cate Geosynthetics and installed by Van Oord.

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

Mariska Buitendijk is one of SWZ|Maritime's journalists as well as the magazine's copy editor.